Vegas Perf Arts Center: Good Idea?

scaled30x40_exteriordusk_t610Not long ago, theatre mavens were predicting that Las Vegas would become Broadway West. But the limited success of hit musicals in the casino capital put the kabosh on that designation. So I have to wonder about the wisdom of building Smith Center for the Performing Arts (model is pictured), a $465 million theater facility that is about to start construction in Downtown Las Vegas’ Union Park development. The Smith Center will be the new home of both the Nevada Ballet Theater and the Las Vegas Philharmonic, which currently play out of an outdated theater at UNLV. In this difficult time for the arts, I’m hoping The Smith Center is a big success. But I’m not sure tourists go to Vegas to hear Beethoven; and will the full-time residents really support the place?

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